All I really want to do right now is discuss with you, in great detail, how desperately I wanted to wear my fuzzy Crocs and yoga pants to work today. Desperately, y’all.
BECAUSE MY EVERYTHING HURTS.
But instead, here’s a photo of me post-marathon. Fake smiling for the camera is my super power.
Oy ve. What.A.Day.
I’m going to rewind a teeny tiny bit back to Saturday for the day before race activities. Also because photos were taken and they must be shared.
Saturday morning I slept in a little bit, and then threw on my sweatpants and headed to Starbucks for an overpriced breakfast. I also made a pit stop at the mailbox, so I got to enjoy Christmas cards from pretty people while sipping on my caramel brulee latte.
I spent most of the day getting race ready and packing, until this girl came and picked me up that afternoon.
Alli was kind enough to drive all the way from Dallas to Fort Worth, then back to Dallas, just so Taylor and I could ride back together after the race. She’s nice like that. Our first stop in the Big D was the expo for packet pickup.
The expo was just blah, and Alli and I weren’t impressed by anything except the free samples of cheesy potato soup that Cotton Patch was giving out. Not to mention, expo parking was FIFTEEN DOLLARS, and we were only in there about fifteen minutes. I mean, come on Dallas.
After the expo, we were more than ready for dinner, so we headed over to Scalini’s for carbs, carbs, and more carbs.
Italian food makes us very, very happy.
I ordered the cheesiest and greasiest dish I could think of – LASAGNA.
And Alli ordered some fancy spicy chicken pasta which was unbelievably good.
Afterwards, it was pretty clear we were in need of something sweet, so we stopped by Whole Foods for a banana bread parfait and creme brulee.
After devouring ALL the sugar, I was in bed by 9, and asleep by ten. I don’t seem to get nervous about races until the actual race day, so I slept like a baby that night.
The next morning I was up by 5:30, and Alli dropped off by 6:45.
Before the race, I met up with THIS GIRL who was running the half marathon. You might recognize her adorable face as the one who coordinated our wedding in April.
Yesterday was Britni’s birthday, and she spent the last few months training for the half. Not only did she finish two minutes under her goal time, she also raised $500 for the A21 Campaign to end human trafficking. On her birthday! She’s really just the coolest.
I also got to meet up with Emily, who I ran part of Cowtown with in February. She came all the way from Houston to run the half!
After a lot of waiting around, the gun finally went off around 8:10.
I took off way too quickly. My watched showed my first few miles as sub 9′s, which I should’ve been more aware of, but by the time I realized it, I needed to make port-a-potty pit stop. But after that, everything basically went downhill.
I’m just going to say it – this wasn’t a good race for me. No, I didn’t train hard, but I did feel relatively strong during training. Nothing felt off, the runs weren’t too difficult, and I really was pretty optimistic for this race. Sub 4:20 seemed more than do-able, and my “plan” was to stick with the 4:15 pacer, and then pick up the pace in the end.
Yeah, that didn’t quite work out.
Nothing felt right for this race. Nothing. Just a couple miles in, I started having trouble breathing. It felt like no matter how hard I tried, I could not get a full, deep breath in. My breathing was shallow, and it physically hurt. I would slow down to try to catch it, and then when it didn’t improve, I started panicking, and almost hyperventilating. That continued for the entire race. I never once felt like I took a full breath in. And I don’t really know why. I do know that it was a crazy weather day. 65 degrees, 80% humidity, there was a lot in the air, it drizzled, it was windy, it poured down rain. But my breathing was what felt like my biggest obstacle for 26.2 miles.
My body struggled. I started hurting way, way too early. I was already sore by mile six. MILE SIX. This still makes no sense to me.
Lastly, I ran the entire race alone. And that was so, so hard. I’m not someone who can’t run alone, but I do run with a buddy or a group for a good portion of training. And when the going gets tough (as it did) it helps to have someone there to encourage you, and give you a reason to keep going. I needed that for this race, and I just didn’t have it.
Taylor and Alli were waiting for me at mile 10. When I made it to them, I broke down crying. I didn’t know why it felt so hard, and I didn’t know why I couldn’t catch my breath. Taylor walked with me for a few minutes, encouraged me, reminded me to drink water, and helped me pull myself together. Then I (slowly) took off again.
Around mile 16 or 17, I saw Emily. I’d completely forgotten that her brother had decided to run, and that she and her family would be there. Cue even more tears. And a whole lot of “I can’t do it!” and “I am never doing this again.”
But she was sweet as can be, and super encouraging, and seeing her definitely lifted my spirits. Also – look how cute she is in her bride hat. Really though.
I saw Taylor and Alli again around mile 19, where I told him that at this point, I was basically stopping to walk every mile. The ONLY reason I hadn’t given up yet was because I was not about to go through all this suffering without a medal.
To make things even more interesting, around mile 20, the rain made an appearance. When it started coming down, I literally started laughing out loud. I was absolutely delirious from the pain of the past 20 miles, and it seemed only fitting that I’d have to spend the last hour of running soaking wet and stomping through puddles.
I’m not lying when I say that the only enjoyable part of this race was the last .2 miles. Anyone who has run any race of any kind knows that once the finish line is in sight, everything changes.
And just like that, it was over!
And of course, my BFF was tracking me along the way. And I gave her the “marathons are so fun you should try one sometime” face.
And the stats for all you numbers geeks.
No, this isn’t at all the race I was hoping for. And Dallas Marathon holds no happy memories for me. It was hard. Almost impossibly hard. And I felt weak, not just physically, but mentally.
I don’t know if I’ll run another marathon again. Part of me says that two is plenty. But of course, another part of me really wants to know what it would feel like to finally run a sub-4. We’ll see, I guess. For now I’m just basking in the post-marathon glory.
Wait. Did I say glory? I meant soreness. Post-marathon soreness.